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3 minutes reading time (520 words)

Austin Lafferty answers all your legal questions

THE local authority is taking financial guardianship for my mother in a care home with dementia. I cannot get power of attorney now, and am wondering if I should contest the council’s guardianship application.

The local authority/social work will seek this sheriff court order if there is no other way to set up payment for the care home fees etc. now that your mum has lost mental capacity - she can’t sign any documents, and cannot now grant you POA. Unless you would make your own application to be appointed guardian, the council being appointed is probably the only way forward.

I AM supposed to knock off at 9.30pm but by the time I lock up it can take up to an extra 15 minutes. I have for years complained but nothing happens. My boss offered to pay an extra 30 minutes overtime but it’s not the money - I just would like to finish on time. Now my line manager has said this is what is expects of me as part of my job but my contract does not specify this. I would just like to finish when I am supposed to according to my contracted hours.

You should be entitled to stop when your contract says so. I suggest you consider making a formal complaint and if refused without good reason, your employers may be regarded as constructively dismissing you if they make it intolerable for you to work, and end work at your contracted time. However, do nothing without taking detailed expert employment law advice.

I AM firstborn from my mum’s marriage to my father, but she remarried and had two other children out of wedlock. Her later daughter is seemingly made executor to her estate handling everything. She has told me nothing. What can I do to stop her and her sister taking everything that belonged to my mum as I do believe my mum wouldn’t have left everything to them.

You may be mentioned in the will, but even if not you have legal rights as a child to a portion of the estate. You cannot be disinherited from certain parts of the estate. Demand information from the executor and if not forthcoming, get a lawyer and threaten enforcement action to secure and recover your lawful inheritance.

We booked a Limo for a thirteenth birthday party. We were told it would include a DVD presented at the end of the night, which it was, but it was blank. I emailed the company and they suggested trying on other machines which we did - nothing. I emailed them again, they said they didn't have a copy. We paid £150 - do we have any redress?

Certainly, they are in breach of contract. I would suggest at least a refund of half your fee. It is difficult to put a price on the disappointment. In our family, we sometimes get out the wedding video from 1983 now transferred from a scratchy videotape to a DVD, but still wonderful for us - so the loss of the record of this happy occasion cannot be wished away by the company.

£73k price premium demanded by homes near top Scot...
Austin Lafferty - the law man's top advice

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